Hallandale Beach Blog - A common sense public policy overview offering a critical perspective on the current events, politics, govt., public policy, sports scene and pop culture of the U.S., South Florida and Europe, especially the UK and Sweden.
In particular, Broward & Miami-Dade County, and the cities of Hallandale Beach, Hollywood & Aventura. Trust me when I tell you, this part of Florida is NOT the Land of Lincoln. Photo in upper-left is Hallandale Beach's iconic beachball-colored Water Tower on State Road A1A, September 2008; March 2018 photo below of North Beach, looking left-to-right, looking north, HYDE Condominium, Etaru Japanese Robatayaki restaurant, and Hollywood Beach in the distance, with umbrellas. All photos by me, © Hallandale Beach Blog, All Rights Reserved.

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

BREAKING: #HollywoodFL - Contentious City Comm meeting: City Manager Ishmael directed to negotiate a separation agreement for City Atty. Jeffrey Sheffel

Developing story...

The Hollywood City Commission was set to reconvene at 4:30 today after contentious 1:00 PM City Commission meeting results in call by Comm. Richard Blattner -supported by Commissioners Traci Callari and Peter Hernandez-  for Hollywood City Manager Wazir Ishmael to enter into negotiations with City Attorney Jeff Sheffel for the purposes of creating a separation agreement for Sheffel, following months of drama and reports of chronic complaints in his office.

These reports included unhappiness with turnover within City Attorney's office due to existing culture there -i.e. Sheffel himselfSheffel's arrest in March for DUI,  and 
more recently, as was discussed at length today, an email from the Assistant City Manager to Sheffel alleging that the City Attorney's Office was behind in paying legal bills to outside counsel defending the city, and also was exceeding his spending authorization in settlements.

Much debate on what true facts were and whether facts were subject to interpretation. 
No seemed to be the consensus - the facts are black and white.

City Attorney Sheffel later said he was short-staffed and that was part of the cause for some of the highlighted problems but Comm. Traci Callari quickly shot back that the reason that he and his office were short-staffed was directly because of his own actions and behavior at the manager.

In his motion, later rescinded after Sheffel agreed to meet with Dr. Ishmael, Blattner was supported by longtime Sheffel opponents Callari and Peter Hernandez, who called for Sheffel to resign at the first City Comm. meeting following his March arrest. 

Publicly supporting Sheffel at the meeting were Mayor Josh Levy and Comm. Debra Case,
while Commissioners Kevin Biederman & Linda Sherwood seemed more on the fence but not at all happy at the various reports.

Update: Before the end of the second half of the 4:30 PM session, Hollywood City Manager Wazir Ishmael announced that he and the City Attorney Sheffel have reached a meeting of the minds regarding a Separation Agreement.
Commissioner Traci Callari made clear following this bit of news that she would like to discuss this development in more depth at the next City Commission meeting, on June 7th.
May 31st, 2017 Update
I will be updating this story tonight with some insight and quotes from from some of the parties involved, including their public comments during the early afternoon meeting, where I was the only person from the media(!) present.
CBS-4 News came by for the continuation after I sent them an email.

I had the opportunity to talk to Hollywood Mayor Josh Levy for a bit following the recent Young Circle Roadway Study at the Lippman Multi-Purpose Center, and naturally, the situation with the City Attorney was one of the subjects we discussed. 
Also in attendance Thursday night at the event were Hollywood Commissioners Debra Case and Richard Blattner.

From the City of Hollywood:

UPDATED: Meetings of the City Commission
Tuesday, June 6, 2017

A Special City Commission Meeting and a City Commission Workshop have been planned for Tuesday, June 6th at City Hall in Room 215. The meeting is at 3:00 p.m. regarding a separation agreement with the City Attorney and the workshop is at 4:00 p.m. regarding the proposed Safety Enhancement District in Emerald Hills. City Commission meetings and workshops are broadcast on the City’s Government Access Channel, Comcast Channel 78, AT&T U-Verse Channel 99 and streamed online on the City’s website at 

http://www.hollywoodfl.org/146/Watch-Commission-Meetings [http://www.hollywoodfl.org/146/Watch-Commission-Meetings 

Thursday, May 11, 2017

Remembering and appreciating someone who captivated me as a kid, and then later proved the maxim about what's old becoming new -and popular- again! Actor Michael Parks, from 'Then Came Bronson' and so much more...

"A Harley Roadster, a bedroll, a lonely stretch of highway: Jim Bronson (Michael Parks) is traveling where the road and the day take him, trying to make sense of things after the suicide of his close friend (Martin Sheen). He doesn't go far along a magnificent stretch of California's coastal Big Sur before he meets Temple Brooks (Bonnie Bedelia), a runway bride just as adrift as Jim is. Together, they'll ride that Harley all the way to New Orleans. Together, they might find what they're looking for."

Trending at Hallandale Beach Blog: What's old becomes new -and popular! again! Actor Michael Parks is finally getting the overdue respect and attention he was due; from 'Then Came Bronson' to the 2012 actor in demand in Hollywood

Then Came Bronson (Intro) S1 (1969)

"Then Came Bronson" NBC Fall Preview for 1969, narrated by Hugh Downs
Michael Parks as 'Jim Bronson,' a former San Francisco newspaper reporter turned motorcycle-driving vagabond, seeking to make sense of his own life and connect-the-dots in an ever-changing world around him. 
Shown above in still of video, the delightful and beguiling Bonnie Bedelia. 😍😍😍😍

I hate to report that my cinematic muse #michaelparks has passed away. Michael was, and will likely forever remain, the best actor I've ever known. I wrote both #RedState and @tuskthemovie FOR Parks, I loved his acting so much. He was, hands-down, the most incredible thespian I ever had the pleasure to watch perform. And Parks brought out the absolute best in me every time he got near my set. From the moment I saw him steal the opening scene of #fromdusktildawn at an advance screening at the Sunset 5 back in the mid-90's, I said to @samosier "Could you imagine what it must be like to work with a Yoda of acting like that guy? I gotta write for him one day." It took me 15 years but my dream came true on Red State (for which Parks won Best Actor at the @sitgesfestival) and then again years later with #tusk. Only Michael Parks could have delivered the line "Is man indeed a walrus at heart?" and make it scary as fuck. My favorite memory of Michael is watching him and #johnnydepp act with and at each other, like a couple of dueling wizards, in their shared scene in Tusk. Parks was in Heaven that day, sharing the screen with another brilliant actor and creating an unforgettable performance. He elevated any flick or TV show he was in and elevated every director he ever acted for. I was so fucking blessed to have worked with this bonafide genius. But really, I was just lucky to have known him at all. My heart goes out to James (Michael's son), Oriana (Michael's wife), Quentin Tarantino (Michael's biggest fan) and any movie or music lover who was ever dazzled by the talents of Michael Parks. Farewell, old friend. I'll see you farther along... #KevinSmith #actor #genius #rip #walrusyes
A post shared by Kevin Smith (@thatkevinsmith) on

A confession: this TV show from 1969 remains one of my ten favorite all-time American TV shows. I was only eight years old when this first aired on TV, yet I was smart enough even then to realize that THIS is what compelling acting was. 
I completely believed everything Michael Parks said and did in his Jim Bronson persona. 
It ALL made sense to me.

Especially the way that he would use the anger or upset that other people he encountered along the road had kept bottled up and carried with them for years, like an open sore, and inevitably find a timely way to turn that anger and hurt or resentment on its ear by making that other character see that maybe-just-maybe, they and their own choices (or lack of action or emotional support) actually bore a larger share of the blame for their particular present misfortune than they were willing to acknowledge.
That was especially the case when another family member who was the person being blamed for the present unhappy circumstances.
Someone almost inevitably needed to forgive someone else, but first, they had to forgive themselves! #kaboom! 
(Presaging Michael Landon in Highway to Heaven? Yep!) 

They are the very qualities that so thoroughly captivated me as a kid in 1969 -and all my friends at Fulford Elementary School in North Miami Beach. Though I was just eight years old when this TV show, yet I was smart enough to realize even then that THIS is what compelling acting was. 
I watched every episode religiously every Wednesday night on NBC-TV, and was thoroughly captivated!

If VCRs and DVRs had existed then, I surely would have watched the episodes over-and-over trying to make sure that I had drained every nuance and anecdote I could out of it before I went to school the next day at school.
Though you may find it hard to believe now, my friends and I talked about the show the next day in detail like I later would talk about sports and politics -with enthusiasm and great curiosity about what others thought about what we'd all seen, and most importantly, what it all really meant.
Like it was philosophy!

For those of you who never saw the show in the first place and who'd like to know more details about it, see this Wiki entry which seems pretty accurate to me:
"Curiously, though the opening promises a journey of self-discovery, the premise of each episode is that Bronson enters someone else's life at a crucial point and acts as a catalyst for change."

Yes, but that's one of the main things I loved about the show!

I haven't always seen eye-to-eye with film director Kevin Smith on various subjects or even liked all of his films, but the words and qualities he uses above in his Instagram post to describe his friend and film muse Michael Parks could not possibly be more spot-on to me.

This show is when I first fell in LOVE with Bonnie Bedelia!  The first time I saw her, when she was just twenty-one, I was smitten like a kitten! 😍😍😍😍

In retrospect, I sometimes think that the entire time I was at IU, I was looking for a Bonnie Bedelia doppelgänger, hoping that one of my smart and clever friends at the IU sororities which would have strong competitors for that Bonnie comparison -Tri-Delt, Delta Gamma 
and Kappa Kappa Gamma and Kappa Alpha Theta would come thru for me.
I was set-up with lots of amazing sorority "sisters" of friends that were close to capturing her spirit and personality, but ultimately, alas, no cigar. 

The talented and lovely Leighton Meester reminded me of the sweetness of a young Bonnie
 from the first time I ever saw her in NBC's cute sci-fi show "Surface" in 2010 when she was 19. 
Now, every time I see BB I think of LM and vice-versa.



You scream, I scream, we all scream for... Gossip Girl. Photo by Terry Richardson.


Me in 2011: Michael Parks -What's old becomes new again!

9/5/11 LA Times: Michael Parks goes from nowhere to go-to guy The actor remembers when his phone rarely rang. Now he's coveted by directors such as Quentin Tarantino, Robert Rodriguez and Kevin Smith.



Saturday, May 6, 2017

Bombshell! It's actually worse than I thought! Latest news from Buddy Nevins at Broward Beat has left me dumbfounded: Broward Auditor Blasts Fast-And-Loose Spending By Greater Fort Lauderdale Convention & Visitors Bureau Under Former Director Nicki Grossman; No Meaningful Operating Controls on CVB Spending. #ethics

Bombshell! Just when you thought that things in #Broward County could not get any worse, that the Broward Establishment and its chosen people could NOT show their contempt for rules, common sense and the taxpayers of the county any more than they have in the recent past, they do.
Thing are actually worse than I thought! 

That's the only conclusion a reasonable, well-informed person like me can draw from the latest news made public Friday by Buddy Nevins at his Broward Beat website. News that has left most of the concerned Broward civic activists, bloggers and elected officials I know and trust dumbstruck by the sheer scope of this scandal, and in my case, for a rare time, left me almost speechless. Almost.

Broward Auditor Blasts Fast-And-Loose Spending By Greater Fort Lauderdale Convention & Visitors Bureau Under Former Director Nicki Grossman; No Meaningful Operating Controls on CVB Spending

Broward Beat
Auditor Blasts Fast-And-Loose Spending By Tourism Bureau Under Nicki Grossman
By Buddy Nevins
May 5, 2017
Broward’s tourism and convention bureau routinely violated the county’s and state spending rules for years, according to a critical audit released this week. Among the shocking findings:
  • Former Tourism Czar Nicki Grossman handed out $178,000 in sales commissions over two years to 14 members of her staff – extra pay based on hotel rooms sold — without having any proof of results, the audit stated.
The audit of the Greater Fort Lauderdale Tourism and Convention Bureau began in June 2016.  Grossman retired after 21 years the same month and was replaced by Stacy Ritter, a former county commissioner.
Read the rest of the post at:

Apparently, the Greater FTL CVB has been run for years just like the Hallandale Beach CRA has been the past ten-plus years under Mayor Joy Cooper, where money goes out the back door without much need to justify it, and with lots of political cover to keep curious citizens from asking pesky questions.
No oversight, no accountability and, seemingly, no proof of anything tangible actually being accomplished required to actually receive $$$.
Just the approving nod-and-wink of the people in charge.

Before continuing on to the Nevins bombshell, I remind you loyal readers of the blog - especially you newcomers!- that I posted something here on the blog about the curious goings on with the Greater Fort Lauderdale CVB as recently as last month. 

For those of you who don't know, the Greater FTL CVB has long been a  bête noire of mine, in large part because for so many years, it has seemed clear to me based on all the available evidence that they were able to consistently get away with frequently saying and doing things publicly that could not be substantiated or proven by facts or data more than probably any other group in South Florida.
Even more, dare I say, than the intentional misstatement of facts, misdirection and spin emanating from the Dolphins and Marlins so often the past ten years, which is really saying something. 

Whether stated at public meetings or via pithy comments to the local South Florida news media that rarely holds tourism groups like them to account publicly for what they say, I'd frequently read and hear things that simply didn't add up.
But the local news media, even when presented with information that contradicted what the CVB said, did and said nothing.
Did nothing like actually engaging in some old-fashioned reporting because the media was dependent upon the CVB for both information and access to many important events, esp. ones with well-known personalities and celebrities certain to attend.

That post of April 6th was labeled, Downward Tourism Trend: Broward County's Tourism efforts, as measured by number of hotel visitors, are suffering just as Las Vegas is seeing very positive changes and results in key demographics, including Millennials

Since then, Buddy Nevins on his website -and me in my tweets at @hbbtruth- has publicly questioned what was going on with the Broward Convention Center and efforts to either expand it or move it, because of a desire to have a large, new convention-style hotel attached, something that has been a goal of the Broward Establishment for multiple 

But the lack of an attached convention-style hotel has also been a longstanding problem for the Miami Beach Convention Center, and yet they seem able to still book big events there every year, like Art Basel, because there are so many hotels within a reasonable walking distance.
But it's true that they are NOT able to book larger corporate or industry conventions because of that very same problem. It's a genuine problem that won't solve itself.

So let's review the reality of 2017 for Broward taxpayers, residents and Small Business owners.
Broward County currently has a Convention Center that nearly everyone agrees now is situated in a bad location. A bad location as far as traffic goes and which crowds out economic engine Port Everglades' legitimate current and future expansion needs.

Broward County owns an indoor sports arena situated in a very bad location out near the Everglades that's not only far from the center or even bulk of Broward's population, but which is also NOT near any existing or future mass transit like TriRail.
And for good measure, that sports arena never generates revenue for Broward County taxpayers AND has a very curious management contract that most US cities and counties would never agree to.
But wait, there's MORE!

We also have in county-owned Fort Lauderdale Hollywood International Airport a place that as we all saw to our dismay and shock in January, quite literally, is full of people who do NOT know what to do in case of a real emergency, like a shooting. 
The County and the airport actually had people in-place there that day who made a horrible situation MUCH WORSE... and given the airport a much-deserved black eye.


Everyone here understands that FLL airport is a hugely important economic engine for the community whose ripple effects are felt all over South Florida, and whose safe, smart and efficient operation is crucial to our area and daily lives.
Yet few people know that it currently lacks an appointed Citizen Advisory Board that can provide a degree of independent oversight and accountability to the community at large that is separate and NOT beholden to the airport's current management, the airlines or the airports contractors and vendors who contribute large campaign funds to County Commission candidates.
We have an airport where most Broward residents no longer comment publicly on the absurd reality that confronts us on a daily basis - when you are at the Tri-Rail Airport train station, you are NOT actually at the airport itself.

You can imagine how dismayed tourists, esp, international visitors, are when they encounter something like that for the first time.
They wonder who would plan something like that, that is both short-sighted and second-rate. And they are right!

I have been publicly urging for years that the Broward County Commission create an Airport Citizen Advisory Board that can be a voice for the people of this community, who are, let us not forget, also the airport's main clients.
We are the customers.

And yet now these same Establishment Movers and Shakers in the Broward political and business community responsible for most of these problems I've mentioned want to have major input in the future location of a new U.S. Courthouse?
Instead of, say, at a minimum, agreeing and insisting that it be located near a prospective Tri Rail Coastal train station so that people all over the county can access it without a car or the need for more expensive parking garages to be built?

No thanks!!!

In light of what I read in Buddy' Nevins' article today about the audit of the Greater FTL CVB and their predilection for winging-it, I truly wonder if the hotel visitors numbers that I cited in my blog post of last month are even lower than what the CVB publicly stated.
It really makes you wonder what you are supposed to believe, if people put in powerful positions of influence can't or refuse to be bothered to document things that would be required in any other well-run business, much less, one that's affiliated with govt. funds.

Do I need to remind you that as things currently stand, there is NOT an elected, county-wide Mayor for Broward County to ensure that there is positive direction, leadership and accountability for its residents and Small Business owners? I thought not.

Yes, to quote myself from this blog several months ago, we could definitely use someone as capable, savvy, hard-working and ethical as former Hollywood Mayor Peter Bober as Broward County Mayor when that title really means something tangible.

Wednesday, May 3, 2017

Kindness and generosity in the political/policy world of Washington, D.C. is not an unknown quality. But too often, the public doesn't hear the true story about someone and their personality until after they die. And so it was with Kate Walsh O’Beirne. Here's what you ought to know...

Kindness and generosity in the political/policy world of Washington, D.C. is not an unknown quality. But too often, the public doesn't hear the true story about someone and their personality until after they die. And so it was with Kate Walsh O’Beirne. Here's what you ought to know...

Mieux vaut tard que jamais - Better late than never...

Updated 2017-05-04 255 PM

I'd meant to post some thoughts last week on my blog about the recent passing of Kate Walsh O’Beirne, but somehow, I got so distracted by the dozens of other things on my mind these days that the first time I had a chance to publicly comment on her death, it was via Twitter, which for all of 140 reasons, is simply too small a platform for me to share what I knew with you loyal readers of the blog.

With the epidemic of shallow and biased news reporting going on all around us in South Florida on local and network TV, as well as what's in print locally and nationally, where a once-iconic magazine like TIME magazine is a shell of its former self -to say nothing of what's become of the once impressive reporting talent at the Miami Herald of the mid-1980's, when there were few newspapers in the U.S. who had a better group of clever and curious foreign correspondents trying to ferret out facts and trends worth knowing- I'm trying to rectify that oversight of mine regarding Kate O'Beirne today.

My reasons for doing so are both altruistic and self-serving. 
Self-serving in the sense that I always like to have an opportunity to remind you in a very tangible way that my blog and I can offer you a unique perspective on the news and current events of the day, locally and nationally, that you simply can't find elsewhere in South Florida or Florida.

Altruistic because I want you loyal readers of the blog to have the advantage of learning and knowing something very fundamental about the ways of Washington, D.C. that are usually ignored by the news media but which I came to learn from personal experience via my 15 years of living and working in the Washington, D.C.area, and getting to meet and know personally some of the biggest political, social and media personalities of the area from 1988-2003.
People whose names and work you know and whom you recognize the moment they appear on TV, even before they're identified on-screen.
People whose work and reputation at or whom are closely identified with The Washington Post, the New York Times, ABC News, CBS News, NBC News and the Brookings Institution and CSIS to name but a few places... 

I suppose the best way to express my feeling is to say that more than the vast majority of you readers can possibly imagine, even the more open-minded among you, there really ARE LOTS of very smart, opinionated and hard-working people in DC who, while perhaps holding diametrically opposing political or policy points of view from you, are not just lots of fun to be with personally, but are, fortunately, possessed of a unique kindness and sense of generosity that 99% of the people with whom you probably politically self-identify with, simply are NOT.
But Kate Walsh O’Beirne was one such person.

In the entirety of the 15 years I lived and worked in the DC area, meeting and working with a wide variety of very smart and conscientious people in all kinds of political and policy areas, there was never a year I was there when at least one person -and often several- and very well-known persons at that, who trusted me to keep their confidence, didn't at some point confide to me a positive story or anecdote they had to share about the exceptional nature of Kate Walsh O’Beirne's personal kindness.

Since I need to respect that confidence that was placed in me, I choose here, now, to share the story of someone who personally knows of her kindness and generosity, and whom, regardless of what you may think about him personally or politically, is better known than any of those people whose names I could name-drop here - Rush Limbaugh.

He, along with Ramesh Ponnuru's spot-on appreciation of her in his National Review column, tell a compelling story of a very influential woman.
Rush, thru the magic power of radio and painting a picture of her that's better and more true than almost anyone else I can think of on the current stage today could.

As it happens, I listened to Rush Limbaugh's nationally-syndicated radio show that day, as I do most days, and knew that it must be important because he started off his show -the single most-listened to radio program in America- with this very telling anecdote.
And as soon as he said her name, I knew exactly what was coming...

(Below, I have posted the video of that Limbaugh radio show segment that is, in a word, amazing. Or as I described it in my tweet last week, GOLD.)

And in listening to Rush Limbaugh relate the story of how she came to take an active interest in someone like him who was then an unknown quantity on the DC political stage, and someone that even many Conservatives and GOP partisans were highly-suspicious of, and often outright condescending of, it made me smile.
Smile because Rush was sharing a story that I personally knew to be true from experience over the years. 
But it's also a story which also made me quite sad because it only reaffirmed the reality that it's usually the case that most people in a community, even the very small community that political/media DC really is, don't hear about those truly selfless positive stories until after someone has passed away.
Trust me, there are a lot of people in Washington at all sorts of places who have felt true #gratitude.

And when you think about it, it also makes you wonder why we can't hear about these sorts of stories about other well-known people when it actually might matter and serve as a model for others, right?


National Review
Kate Walsh O’Beirne R.I.P. 
By Ramesh Ponnuru
April 23, 2017 3:05 PM 

Kate O’Beirne was part of National Review’s world before she joined the staff. When she became the magazine’s Washington editor in 1995 her resume already included stints at Senator Jim Buckley’s office, the Reagan administration, and the Heritage Foundation. She served NR in that position for eleven years and then became president of National Review Institute for six more. 
She brought a witty and well-informed conservatism to a national television audience as well through weekly appearances on CNN’s marquee political talk show “Capital Gang.” Conservatives were outnumbered there as on cable news generally at that time, but it never seemed that way as long as she was on.
Both her “Bread and Circuses” column for NR and her television commentary were marked by a rare combination of a deep interest in conservative policy, psychological insight, and common sense. Many of those same qualities put her advice — on politics, editorials, careers, and personal matters — in high demand.

Kate O’Beirne: Godmother of the Modern Conservative Movement
Transcript of this segment is here:
I encourage you to read it, too, since it might make even more of an impact.

In his column, Ramesh Ponnuru uses the phrase rare combination of a deep interest in conservative policy, psychological insight, and common sense

It's also what, after I changed my party registration from Democrat to Republican after moving back here from DC in 2003, I observed is so clearly and frequently missing in Florida and South Florida commentary, esp. among the GOP set who so often are jaw-droppingly disconnected from pop culture. 
Or boring.
Or boring and depressing to be around!

Both her “Bread and Circuses” column for NR and her television commentary were marked by a rare combination of a deep interest in conservative policy, psychological insight, and common sense. Many of those same qualities put her advice — on politics, editorials, careers, and personal matters — in high demand.

And yes, in case you forgot, Ramesh Ponnuru was talking her working for the Sen. James Buckley who was William Buckley's older brother, so she knew both brothers about as well as anyone could know them.


#HollywoodFL based photographer/entrepreneur Esther Chuang

#HOLLYWOODFL based photographer and entrepreneur Esther Chuang with Hollywood Mayor-elect Josh Levy
Thumbs up! What a night! #HOLLYWOODFL based photographer and entrepreneur Esther Chuang with a very elated Hollywood Mayor-elect Josh Levy at his Victory Party, held at Leo Anato's Atelier3/AT3 on Harrison Street & S. 19th Avenue, Hollywood. AT3's great environment and the amazing variety of food prepared by chef Kevin Dreifuss, former owner/chef of now-closed ENDS MEAT restaurant, was SUPERB! November 8, 2016 Esther Chuang, Morro Dois Irmãos, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, 2015
Above, perhaps my most-favorite photo ever of Esther, which is really saying something considering the THOUSANDS that I've actually seen of her, from all over the world. But despite the fact that you can't actually see it here, trust me, her amazing smile and inner and external beauty are there. This photo is an even more amazing achievement when you know the backstory of what it took for Esther to get to the top of the mountain, since it's NOT for the faint of heart. Next time you see her, ask her about that! Morro Dois Irmãos, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, on her birthday, July 10, 2015. That's the Christ The Redeemer statue atop Mount Corcovado way out in the horizon on the top of another mountain, to the left of her head. To the right is the world famous beach of Ipanema and to the left is the equally famous beach of Copacabana. In case you forgot what the Christ the Redeemer statue in Rio looks like, up close, plus the Amazon area of Brazil that Esther grew up near in Manaus, here's another Brazilian beauty to connect-the-dots for you: Gisele Bündchen, aka @Gisele.

Abençoado por Deus e bonito por natureza!✨ ������

A post shared by Gisele Bündchen (@gisele) on

A floresta Amazônica tem um papel fundamental no equilíbrio do clima na Terra e, portanto, na vida de cada um de nós. Nos últimos anos a proteção diminuiu e o desmatamento aumentou drasticamente. E o que já era ruim, pode ficar ainda pior. Se as medidas que o governo vem tomando não forem vetadas, nosso futuro estará ameaçado. Diga NÃO à diminuição da proteção da Floresta do Jamanxim! Diga NÃO à exploração de minério no coração da floresta! #TodosPelaAmazônia #342Amazonia #TodosPelaAmazonia Assine a petição: link na bio. ������✨���� The Amazon Rainforest plays a key role in balancing the climate on the Earth and therefore in each of our lives. In recent years, protection has decreased and deforestation has increased sharply. And what was already bad can get even worse. If the measures that the government has been taking are not vetoed, our future will be threatened. Say NO to the reduction of the Jamanxim Forest´s protection! Say NO to ore mining in the heart of the Forest! #togetherfortheAmazon

A post shared by Gisele Bündchen (@gisele) on